Chopin: Impromptus and Preludes

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Thursday, November 05, 2015

The only known photograph of Frédéric Chopin, taken in 1849. The only known photograph of Frédéric Chopin, taken in 1849. (Louis-Auguste Bisson)

While in residence at the medieval Real Cartuja Monastery on the Spanish island of Mallorca, Chopin composed miniature masterpieces. Despite his poor health, in addition to experiencing the island’s extreme weather, the Polish keyboard master was able to produce groundbreaking works, many of which are now considered standard canon for all pianists.

On this episode, David Dubal shares several intense and very short preludes such as the Nos. 1, No. 5 and No. 9. Noted performers this week include Martha Argerich, Shura Cherkassky, Yuan Sheng and Claudio Arrau.

Program Playlist

Prelude No. 1 in C major, op. 28
Shura Cherkassky
ASV

Prelude No. 1 in C major, op. 28
Jakob Gimpel
Cambria

Prelude No. 5 in D major, op. 28
Claudio Arrau
APR

Prelude No. 5 in D major, op. 28
Jorge Bolet
Philips

Prelude No. 5 in D major, op. 28
Robert Lortat
Dante

Impromptu No. 2 in F sharp major, op. 36
Yundi Li
Deutsche Grammophon

Prelude No. 21 in B flat major, op. 28
Martha Argerich
Philips

Prelude No. 21 in B flat major, op. 28
Juana Zayas
Music & Arts

Prelude No. 9 in E major, op. 28
Alfred Cortot
Philips

Prelude No. 9 in E major, op. 28
Ann Schein
MSR Classics

Prelude No. 9 in E major, op. 28
Bela Davidovich
Philips

Impromptu in C sharp minor Op. posth. 66
Halina Czerny-Stefanska
Polskie Nagrania Muza

Prelude No. 15 in D flat major, op. 28
Shura Cherkassky
ASV

Impromptu No. 1 in A flat major, op. 29
Wilhem Kempff
London

Prelude No. 20 in C minor, op. 28
Shura Cherkassky
ASV

Prelude No. 20 in C minor, op. 28
Jakob Gimpel
Cambria

Prelude No. 13 in F sharp minor, op. 28
Jorge Bolet
Philips

Prelude No. 16 in B flat minor, op. 28
Jakob Gimpel
Cambria

Prelude No. 16 in B flat minor, op. 28
Bela Davidovich
Self Released

Prelude No. 16 in B flat minor, op. 28
Martha Argerich
Dante

Prelude No. 16 in B flat minor, op. 28
Jorge Bolet
Philips

Prelude No. 16 in B flat minor, op. 28
Claudio Arrau
Philips

Comments [4]

Marcus from Manhattan

Where's Rubinstein in any of these Chopin explorations?

Nov. 17 2015 11:03 AM
Meredith from NYC

Another thrilling program. Great quotations, from Schumann and also the one at the end. I loved the prelude 20 especially--this will haunt me for a while....thanks for 2 comparisons. And Kempff is very impressive in Chopin as well as Beethoven. Look forward to next week.

Nov. 08 2015 11:43 PM
Eric from Half Moon Bay

I came to this site quite by accident, looking for SLSQ's performance of the op. 131 Quartet. Beethoven.... but being a Chopin lover I had to stay. Fantastic.

Nov. 08 2015 10:46 PM
Susan Mitchell from Boca Raton, FL 33496

Superb, exciting program. I love David Dubal's comparisons of performances that take me deeper into the complexities of the music. And his comments about the music-- as, in this evening's program, his quotiation from Schumann which gave one of the best explanations of style--and variations within style-- that I've ever heard. There is no one like David Dubal.

We lost our only classical music station in southeast Florida a couple of months ago. The WQXR app has been my salvation.

Nov. 05 2015 09:30 PM

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